Tom Golbov, 1932-2015

From time to time, I’d see him standing out on his back porch smoking a cigarette. We would wave to each other, but hardly did we ever speak other than to say a polite ‘hello’ to each other.

Along with this was the fact that while this man’s home was being built, Kyle saw a beginning of a fire, that left unchecked could have burned the building down. It was discovered the blaze began after some plumbers had been working on the pipes in the kitchen area and a hot-ember fell in a pile of debris.

That was 16-years ago. Then I learned that he passed away on February 7, 2015.

And suddenly, I find myself wishing I had tried harder to get to know him as since his death, I’ve learned he and I had more in common than either of us knew.

His name was Tom Golbov, having been born in Oroville, California, in 1932 and moving to Eureka shortly there after. Tom was also a U.S. Army veteran, serving in Korea, and moving to Reno, Nevada in 1961, where he joined the staff as a Laboratory Technician in the Department of Physics Department of the University of Nevada.

He also worked as a life insurance agent for Transamerica, a job that took him and his wife of 61-year, Joan to Phoenix, AZ for 13 years, until his retirement, at which time they returned to Reno to be close to their family which includes daughter Lorraine Hiatt, and sons, Alan and George Golbov.

Tom’s wife is from Eureka, California. In fact her brother, Gerald “Dick” Atwell, was born in 1929 in Eureka. He died in Surprise, Arizona on April 26, 2010 at the age of 80.

Dick was a general contractor “Builtwell by Atwell” for 28 years and an instructor for 25 years at College of the Redwoods. He also received the Southwest Eureka Rotary Club Vocational Service Award in 1991 for Outstanding Service to the Community and in 1996 received from the Humboldt Builders Exchange Construction Person of the Year.

One of the homes Dick built included the “Kins Sportsman House” in 1962.  He also built the Lady Bird Johnson Grove dedication platform and supervised the building of the Evergreen Lodge.

Tom’s father, Walter Golbov was born in Russia, January 16, 1902, dying May 5, 1958 at his home in Klamath. He had lived there for three years, and was an employee of the Arrow Mills. He’s interred in the IOOF Memorial cemetery of Crescent City.

Tom’s mother was born August 30, 1904 in Palermo, California in Butte County. She passed away in Sparks October 17, 1979 and buried at Our Mother of Sorrows Cemetery near her grandson, Ivan who lived only 18-days, passing away April 9, 1972.

Tom was 83-years old.


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